Casting Around

Conserve 2000, Water Trails

The Commission's Conserve 2000 program lets anglers, boaters and other conservation-minded people join the Commission in working to protect our state's aquatic resources. One vital aspect of the Conserve 2000 program is that anglers, boaters and conservationists take action. That makes Conserve 2000 purposeful.

To help and encourage readers to understand Conserve 2000 and give the program meaning, we're covering six major Conserve 2000 topics in feature articles in PA&B's six year-2000 issues. Each subject mirrors the three zeros in the Conserve 2000 logo: The first, the global, general concerns of the topic; the second, the regional aspects of the subject; and the third, the local parts of the subject, those that call readers to action. So during the year 2000 you'll be able to read more about Conserve 2000 and specifically how the program can benefit you and our aquatic resources.

Here are the article topics we'll cover during the year:

The first article in this series, written by Commission Aquatic Resources Program Specialist Laurel Garlicki, explains some of the concerns about Pennsylvania's nongame and threatened and endangered reptiles and amphibians. The midland painted turtle on this issue's front cover, photographed by Andrew L. Shiels represents nongame species and their specific habitat requirements. About 75 percent of the Commonwealth's fish, reptiles and amphibians are "nongame." There is much work to be done to ensure their long-term conservation. Conserve 2000 funds will help with the protection, conservation and restoration of these important species and their habitats.

Also in this issue on page 45 is the first in a series of articles on the Commission's Water Trails Program. Water trails are much like the more familiar land-based trails, except in this case you follow the trail via boat, instead of hiking or riding a bike or horse. Water trails provide opportunities for fishing, wildlife watching, enjoying the scenery, learning about the history of a waterway and the surrounding area, and just plain leisurely motoring or paddling down a waterway.

In addition to designating projects for inclusion in the official state Water Trails Program, the Commission provides support and technical assistance for water trail partners. Along these lines, we're publishing articles with maps about each water trail. The first in this series is the Juniata River Raystown Branch Water Trail. The other water trails we'll cover in year 2000 issues include Swatara Creek, Lehigh River, Allegheny River, Schuylkill River and the Susquehanna River.--Art Michaels.

January/February 2000 Angler & Boater

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